(LINA) – As Liberia joins the world in celebrating International Anti-Corruption Day, the Center for Transparency and Accountability in Liberia (CENTAL) is calling on the Liberian Government to prioritize and vigorously fight against corruption.
Addressing a news conference at CENTAL’s headquarters in Sinkor in Monrovia, CENTAL Executive Director, Mr. Anderson D. Miamen, said there can be no better time to do so than now when the country’s economy is seriously challenged and the negative impacts of corruption are glaringly visible across the country.
The CENTAL Boss reiterated its calls for the CDC-led government to move away from talk to action; from future to now; and from delay to speed, in taking the necessary steps to decisively address corruption in Liberia.
He noted that the fight against the vice must be holistic and not be seen by the public as targeting specific groups and individuals.
He added that the country has lost millions to graft and greed that must be identified, retrieved and re-invested into the economy to help alleviate the hardship ordinary citizens currently face.
Mr. Miamen, then used the occasion to recommend to the Liberian government the scrupulous enforcement of existing policies and frameworks for fighting corruption, mainly in Liberia.
He stressed that the law must work for all and not a selected few in the society and also recommended the establishment of a specialized Anti-Corruption Court as well as provision of direct prosecutorial powers to the LACC to aid in timely processing and prosecuting corruption cases.
Miamen further called for increase in moral and financial support to public integrity institutions to operate fully and independently.
The CENTAL boss, however, called for the full compliance with and implementation of policies, regulations and best practices around contracting, beneficial ownership, procurement, assets recovery, etc.
Miamen encouraged civil society, media, and the general public to be vocal on issues related to corruption, remain constructively engaged and demand transparency and accountability in how the country’s resources are distributed and managed.
CENTAL believes that winning the fight against corruption, which is considered the leading cause of poverty and underdevelopment in Liberia, requires increased commitment and political will, which are currently lacking in Liberia’ he said
He expressed the belief that successive Liberian Governments have not done enough to decisively and impartially deal with corruption, including full implementation of relevant anti-corruption laws and policies as well as provision of adequate moral and financial support to public integrity institutions to independently and robustly operate.